CHAPTER TWO

	The next morning Sam was in his bed sleeping, his blankets 
pulled up to his neck, his body curled into a comfortable ball under 
the sheets and quilts. His mother walked in, deciding to wake him up 
and therefore destroy a perfect good night sleep. "Sam, it's time 
to get up," she called. "Your alarm went off a half an hour ago, 
hot shot." 
	"Leave me alone," he muttered to his mother.   
	"You better get yourself dressed.  Otherwise, you'll waste 
a lovely Saturday," she hoped that the sunny Saturday after the big 
game would be enough to cure her son. Little did she know that as 
soon as Doc B leaped out her son was instantly cured of the prophet 
disease.
	"Saturday," he said surprised. It was only Tuesday the last 
time he checked. Time sure does fly by! But, what happened to that 
time that did fly by? The last thing he remembered he was running 
through the seed corn field, taking his shortcut toward home, after 
his basketball practice for the upcoming game against the Bentleyville 
Tigers. Somehow time leaped ahead, and he found himself being 
congratulated for winning the game . . . a game he swore he never 
played.
	He got up, took a shower, dressed himself, and came downstairs, 
walking into the kitchen to have breakfast.
	"That was some game you played yesterday, little brother," Sam's 
older brother congratulated as soon as he entered.  Tom planned to get 
his younger brother talking about the game, so that he would stop being 
obsessed with telling him not to go off to Vietnam only to be killed.
	"Yes, I guess it was," he said. All he could do was guess, and 
he only wished that he was around to actually play it. He also wished 
more than anything that he was around and could remember when his 
brother arrived home from training for the war.  He was jipped out of 
time with Tom, since the first time Sam saw his brother was when Sam 
was being lifted up by his teammates after the game on Friday, calling 
out to his brother with an arm stretched out to him . . . not when his 
brother was expected to arrive on Wednesday when he was at another 
basketball practice.
	"I can't believe that Elk Ridge finally beat Bentleyville," Tom 
stated. "They were the only team that we didn't beat when I was playing, 
and we were in the state championships. I won't be surprised if the team 
makes it to the championship again this time, especially with you playing 
for them."
	"I would be surprised," Sam said. He moved the insides of his 
soft-boiled egg around with his spoon.
	"Not if you keep scoring like you did yesterday," Sam's little 
sister, Katie, commented. "Getting a basket at the last second of the 
game. That was really awesome!"
	"Awesome?" Sam questioned, curious about what his little sister 
had just said due to never hearing the word before in his young life. 
	"You know, 'awesome,'" Katie clarified. "You said -"
	"Sam said a lot of things the past few days, Katie," their mother 
stated. "I think it's for the best if we forget about everything which 
happened, including the little things."
	"What did I say? What happened?" Sam asked, now more confused 
about past few days than before because of his mother's statement.
	The others ignored his questions, as Sam saw "his father" walk 
into the room. Doc B walked over to the coffee pot, grabbed his 
father's mug, and poured himself a glass of coffee, before sitting 
down at the table with himself and his family. His mother placed a 
heaping dish of eggs, bacon and a slice of bread smothered with butter 
in front of him. He knew the food was unhealthy for him and so was the 
coffee, but  decided it was better off if he just shut up and ate . . . 
Well, better of for the kid sitting next to him, who would certainly 
become more confused if he was blamed for causing his father's eating 
habits due to a "crazy" belief that Mr. Beckett was going to die soon. 
He felt miserable, but forced himself to eat all of it just as his 
father would have.
	"Do you know that eggs are actually good for you now? The 
doctors proved it," Doc B heard a voice say from behind him as he 
tried to eat his eggs. "As for my pop's cigars, -"
	"Joey," Doc B said, glad that we were the only ones in the 
kitchen. "Aren't you supposed to be in school?"
	"No, I'm on break," a teenager answered. "Anyway, it's 
Saturday."
	Doc B looked away from me and his dish, and saw a younger 
version of himself looking directly at Joey, both dressed in sweaters 
and khakis which could be from any year. "Dad, who's this?"
	"Who's who?" Doc B asked.
	"The guy next to you," Sam indicated.
	"You can see me," I said surprised. "I can't even see me."
	"Huh?" he said confused.  
	"He's not supposed to," Doc B clarified, whispering to me.  Sam 
knew, and my pop told me, that little Doc B couldn't see my pop. But, 
as pop would probably say, "something went really ca-ca with the old 
Chamber I use."
	"I'm Sam," the sixteen-year-old introduced.
	"Doc, did you split in half, or something?" I joked. Doc B gave 
me a look telling me to disappear or at least not say anything. Well, 
I never listen to what grownups say anyway and little Doc B looked like 
a really okay kind of guy, so I introduced myself to him by my first 
name only. 
	"That was the start of a beautiful friendship," as Bogart once 
said.


Monica, (c) 1997